It Begins [11.10.2013] Are you ready?

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I am proud to say that the Brisbane Roar are out right favorites to win the A-league this season, and everyone knows it.

Going in to this season we could have been looking forward to a 4th straight A-league Championship if it were not for the series of unfortunate events which led to the disappointment of last season. The 2013/14 A-league season  begins 11.10.2013, this marks the club getting back on track to achieving ours goals and potential.

Thing to look forward to:

  • The Return of the King- Matt McKay has returned to the kingdom, his first game back at ‘The Cauldron’ will be a memorable one.602937_10151886431638536_1428854417_n
  • Our Attacking Juggernaut-  We have the most promising, experienced and feared attacking line-up in the league with Berisha, Broich, Miller and Franjic. With the possibility of bringing in another  quality visa player to fill Franjic’s position of Right Wing, we would become even more of a complete team. ( Whether you like it or not, in a team which is in my opinion complete for A-league standard { The Prefect mix of AUS players & International players plus the balance of experience and youth}  Franjic is unfortunately the weak link {I don’t mean this as a bad thing}, due to that he is being played out of position.
  • The Rise to stardom of Luke Brattan-  This season Brattan will be able to make his mark on the league and hopefully maybe even push for a seat of the plane to Brazil.images
  • Berisha’s goal scoring- Berisha is the favorite for the golden boot based on preseason result. I believe the Bess will be able to get back to the high of goals which he scored in his first season with us or even more.
  • The Continued rise of James Donachie-  Donachie was an amazing replacement for our injured captain Matt Smith in the 2nd half of last season. I believed that he was our best player during that period of time, ultimately I would love to see him start every game this season. Depending on how the season runs, by the end of the season the Roar are going to find it very difficult to hang on to him as overseas interest will be presented to him.
  • The FFA Cup- the new cup competition will begin in early February.

I would really like to position what our clubs long term goals should be ahead of this season and beyond.

The Roars Goals 

  • Qualify for the Asian Champions League (This is the most important goal )  (This should be our goal every season and we should be able to achieve this easily)
  • Win the A-league Premiers Plate
  • Win the A-league Grand Final
  • Win the FFA Cup
  • Get out of the Group stage for the ACL
  • ‘Win The ACL’ (Qualify for the FIFA World Club Championships)
  • Preform at the ‘World Club Championship’
  • Maintain an crowd average attendance of 30,000 each season (*In the near future)
  • Promote the game and the club more around Brisbane and the rest of Queensland (Unless other Queensland teams come in the the league)
  • Have the best youth development program in the country and the East Asian region
  • Produce high quality youth products ( 80% of the First team to be youth products)
  • Bring in a Big Name ‘Marquee Player’ (Which will put the club on the international stage)
  • Have our own permanent Club house and Training facilities ( Training Fields, rooms, post game facilities, weights room, function rooms, head offices, media room, etc )

AFC_Champions_League_crest                                          Club-World-Cup12

Current Trialists:

So far them team has a 21 man squad out of a max 26, so there are still 5 spots to fill in which I imagine we will keep at least one spear in case of emergency that may occur.

IMG_0657So far we have only have 2 two successful trialists, Petratos and Ferreira. There are still alot of NPL players which are trialing which include Jai Ingham (Qlympic FC) who at this stage is most likely to be signed his deal will have to wait until after Olympics NPL Finals Series, he would be a great addition to the team, Chris Lucas and Jarrod Kyle (Palm beach) and Antonio Murray (Brisbane City) who last week was rumored to have signed for the club. Murray is a very good player and I would like to have him at the club but everyone is forgetting that his is English and will count as a visa player. Unfortunately, meaning no disrespect that is a waste of a visa spot.

There is one player who is a possibility, but it has been a bit controversial lately why this play has not been simply invited for

a trial with the club just to show the club what he can do.

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His stats certainly speak for themselves,  33 goals in 23 matches, 6 hat tricks throughout the season. This player is Kado Aoci. Now it does puzzle me why he hasn’t  had a trail yet, 33 goal in any league is amazing. Maybe its because he plays in the Brisbane Premier League and they only want to look at players from the new NPL which is the future of Australian football, which I agree. But come on, does he have to move to a NPL club just to get a trail. I like the NPL alot, but if there are players producing those stats in another league, I would want to take a look at him. This doesn’t just include Kado, but if there is a player which is flying under the radar in a league which isn’t published much and that particular player may benefit our team, then why aren’t the roars scouts out there trying to find them. That is what the scouts are paid for, to find the next big thing.

The New Kits: 

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Once again the Roar will be the best looking team in the A-league. The new kits are amazing and make us look more professional. The kits are of the same style as club like Borussia Bortmund and Newcastle United.

The Home Kit- The new home jersey clearly focuses on the mighty orange of the roar, I like the new neck style is sick. This jersey will be a great icon to get behind at home games.

The Away Kit- The pain white with the orange strips on the sides is beast, should look good at away games.

The 3rd Kit- The first 3rd kit the roar has had is just all style, I like the introduction of the grey and the orange across the chest. It will be interesting to see which games the kit will be used for.

The Clubs Status:

I believe that the Brisbane Roar are greatly under appreciated in the footballing landscape of Australia. If it wasn’t for our 2010/11 and 2011/12 season team, the way the A-league is today would not have been possible. images (1)

There was an interesting fact stated by the commentators during the Socceroos resent World Cup Qualifying game in Sydney, he acknowledge that (from memory) 4 or the 11 starters for the Socceroos were current or former Brisbane Roar Players plus some of the players on the bench. These players were Sasa Ogenovski, Tommy Oar, Robbie Kruse and Matt McKay who started.

This is an amazing statistic and no other A-League team can match it. However, there has been no thanks or compensation from the FFA for our help in producing these players.

Were still waiting………

Predictions

These are my predictions for this season for how the table win look by the end of the season.

(****Please take in mind that even though I am a fanatic Roar supporter, I care about the development of the A-league. So therefor my opinions are mostly from a neutral****)

  1. *Brisbane Roar*
  2.  Western Sydney Wanderers
  3. Melbourne Victory
  4. Adelaide United
  5. Central Coast Mariners
  6. Melbourne Heart
  7. Newcastle Jets
  8. Sydney FC
  9. Wellington Phoenix
  10. Perth Glory

Western Sydney WanderersShinji+Ono+League+Player+Portrait+Session+4m-XcuCaKrRl

After their amazing run of form last season, I still believe that WSW can reproduce there performances and be a challenger for the the title, how ever the might of the Roar will be standing in their way.

Last season WSW were allowed 6 visa spots which gave them a huge advantage over the rest of the competition. I am still in shock and trying to get me head around it after hearing that WSW are allowed 6 visa spots again (up until this moment of time WSW have not signed a 6th visa player). I would Like to know why they are allow it again, no other expansion team has ever had these privileges before.

Melbourne Victory

The old master of our club now at the Victory has a promising season ahead of him.

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The Victory I believe have done very well to cover the crucial players which left their club at the end of last season e.i. Rojas,  Flores, Mullen and Celeski. They have brought in two former roar players Kosta Barbarouses and Mitch Nichols, both will most likely be in the first team and shouldn’t be of a worry to the Roar when we play them as “NICHOLS IS SHIT”.

Just yesterday they have brought in struggling oversea’s Australian James Troisi on a season Loan. Now no matter what people may say, Troisi is a quality player and would be a starting Socceroo player if it were not for him getting no game time for his club Atlanta in the serie A. Troisi can play upfront as a ST or CF and play as a CAM which I suspect will be were he’ll play at Victory.

The Victory’s Marquee player who arrived in the country yesterday is a player which we should all look out for this season, former Chilean International Pablo Contreras. Contreras, 35, has played for some big clubs throughout Europe including Monaco, Osasuna, Sporting CP, Braga, PAOK and most recently Olympiacos in the Greek Super League were he was apart of the team which beat Arsenal in last years Champions league group stage.

Like us he Victorys youth is very good, with the likes of Ansell, Nabbout, Geria (former roar player, biggest mistake the club made) and Connor Pain who will  be most likely to start for the Victory.

When Postecoglou can in for the Victory last season, I had feared that he would bring in players that would be better then ours. However, he brought in players like Adama Traore, Bru, Coe and Guiherme Finkler who I thought might have been the new Broich but due to an early season injury stopped him from showing the league what he could do. Finkler is a player which may break out this season, so I will be on the look out. Also now with Traore gaining AUS citizenship the Victory have another free visa spot which they may fill which another quality player before the season starts.

I don’t believe the Victory can go all the way but they will be fighting up the top of the table the whole season.

 Adelaide United 

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Like the last few seasons, there hasn’t been must preseason speculation about Adelaide. However, like they did last season I think they win be strong from the first whistle. With the signings of the two Argentines Neumann and Carrusca last season who were both good players, they have now signed to Spanish Barcelona Academy rejects Isaias and Cirio who are both quality players that have played with the likes of Messi and some other current Barcelona  players.

Apart from these to signings there isn’t a lot more to say about Adelaide, they win be strong for most of the season but win drop off in some parts. So therefor, they won’t really be in contention for the title.

Central Coast Mariners

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The Grand Final winners of season past, they finally did it. But that will be it for the Mariners now for awhile, I simply cannot see that they can make up for the amount of quality players they lost at the end of the last season e.i.  Bojic, Ryan, Bozanic, Zwaanswijk and McBreen (who is on a half season loan in China and will be back half way through the season. But will it be to late by then?).

With the signs of Flores, the resigning of Matt Simon, former troublesome Roar Goalkeeper Liam Reddy and Dutch Defender Marcel Seip to replace Zwaanswijk. I don’t believe that these players are enough to make the Mariners title contenders again.

Melbourne Heart

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For me, the Heart will be the most interesting team to watch how they go. With former Socceroos great John Aloisi at the helm, the heart will make a significant improvement from last season.

They’ve brought in some great players this season including former Roar legend Massimo Murdocca, Behich on Loan from Turkey,  quality  Australian defender  Patrick Kisnorbo from Leeds, Dutch Back Rob Wielaert and quality striker who happens to be the national Malta captain Michael Mifsud. The Heart Marquee signing is former dutch international Orlando Engelaar who was unfortunately injured in a preseason game against the roar and will miss the first half of this coming season, therefor the Heart were allow to bring in a replacement. Italian Andrea Migliorini who will be a the heart for the first half of the season on loan.

Not forgetting, the Heart also have the Kewell factor in their hands, this season it will be interesting to see whether Harry still has it.

Its good to see that the Heart have gotten rid of alot of their dead weight players such as Thompson, Bolton, Fred and Garcia. This will enable a new bread on Heart players to flourish.

The Heart still have alot of problems which the need to be address this season, so they will still struggle this season. However, I believe that they can do enough to make the finals for the first time this season.

Newcastle Jets

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On paper, the Jets don’t have a very attractive roster (apart from Heskey, but its Heskey so……) the Jets youth players are going to play a huge part in how well they go this season. With their break out players last season Goodwin and Birighitti, they will have to preform well again if the are to be competitive. With the make up of their youth players making up the u21 national team, players like Connor Chapman, Joshua Brillante, Andrew Hoole and Adam Taggart all put in amazing performances for the national u21’s, they will have to do the same for the jets.

The older players will have to step up and guide these youth players, Bridges, Heskey, Burns and new dutch back Kew Jaliens will have to mentor the youth squad.

The Jets may qualify for the finals, however I see them this season just missing out.

Sydney FC

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Sydney in my opinion are the biggest embarrassment to our league, they have been given so much help by the FFA over the previous seasons to make them once again a title contender and to be the face of the A-league. All they have done is bring in the biggest name to ever play in the A-league ADP, his meaning means shit all if you cant form a team around him which will make the team strong again. ADP knows this and I dont blame him for wanting to leave, and he will if Sydney doesn’t chance. Former Roar coach Frank Farina is currently the head coach, but I cannot see that he has made any improvements to their team.  The best thing they’ve done so far is make ADP captain and demote Terry McFlynn ( who is shit). They’ve brought in so far former Roar back Matt Jurman, Garcia, Nick Carle (Back form loan), Yairo Tau (back again for another shit season), Tiago ( the worst players in the a-league) and Australian u21 Corey Gameiro, who is a very good player but it will be interesting to see how he goes. They also signed former Mariner full back Pedj Boic, good player how ever what mad him an influential player was the rest of the quality mariners back line which Sydney don’t have. They have also sign  Serbian midfielder  Nikola Petkovic, however I haven’t been able to find any footage of him playing as well as its hard to find may stats on him, so who knows what he’ll be like?

I’m predicting a more disappointing season for Sydney unless something changes. ADP will leave Sydney at the end of this season so Roar send him an offer, Im sure Broich would be happy to move to a normal wage so ADP could be our Marquee.

Wellington Phoenix 2013/14 Wellington Phoenix Headshots Session

With coming dead bottom last season, the Phoenix have dismissed former coach Rickie Herbert and have replaced him with former Victory coach the Scot Ernie Merrick. Merrick has been handed the difficult task of reviving the Wellington Club, he has cut away alot of dead weights already including Cernak, Hogg, Smith, Sanchez, Lochhead and Totori which is a good start. So far the Phoenix has brought in former Victory legend Carlos Hernandez which is an important signing for the club. Also another country man for Hernandez from Costa Rica Kenny Cunningham. They also signed youth product Reece Caira from WSW, they have also sign some players from the NPL’s across the nation including Josh Brindell-South  who plays ing the QLD NPL for Moreton Bay United.

The Phoenix will defiantly be in the bottom half of the table this coming season.

Perth Glory 

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There will be no Glory for Perth this season, there is no good way to put it but they are just a terrible team. There only hopes lay on the shoulders of 16 year old Daniel De Silva (which I am very jealous that they have him). De Silva is the future of Australian Football, he have to have a huge season to get the Glory out of the position their in. The still have the New Zealand Striker and all time a-league leading goal scorer Shane Smeltz  , however if last seasons something to go off, Smeltz has lost his prolific goal scoring ability. The Roar have taken their best player Liam Miller and so far they have not been able to replace him. The Glory just don’t have players that can be consistent the whole season. They’ve brought in alot of youth players which include Cameron Edwards, Jake Duncan, Maclaren (from Blackburn Rovers) and Ryan Edward on loan from Reading. And once again they’ve brought back on loan Ryo Nagai, I just want to ask “WHY”?

With a win less preseason tour to South Africa against relatively easy opponents the Glory are going to have a very difficult season unless they make some important transfers before the start of the season. With two visa spots left they are running out of time.

The A-League

I have a few problems with how the A-League is run and coordinated currently.

FFA Bias:

The biggest problem that I have and I hope other share the same view, the bias towards FFA owned clubs and the ‘Big Blue’ clubs (Victory and Sydney FC). This is recently evident in the New A-league season Ads on Tv, were from memory you only see two small snip-its of footage for the Roar compared to the rest of the A-league in particularly WSW, Sydney and the Victory. Some may say that their try to market the A-league to the wide Australian audience by showing more of the Marquee players in the ads, but they only teams that would matter for would be Sydney ( With ADP) and Newcastle (with Heskey) because lets be honest their the only two that the majority of people with know (No offence meant towards Ono but no one had really heard of him before he came to the a-league unless you were familiar with Japanese football). I think its totally unfair to the rest of the A-league as clubs like ours aren’t getting enough publicity. With the Roar and the Mariners being the two leading teams for the past couple of seasons, we have seen absolutely on help or publicity opportunities from the FFA.

E.g.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X66ntfn-MVs&feature=c4-overview&list=UUn6UMS98Ox-B3jkSWlweJ2w (Roar Appears Once)

The Visa player system:

A second problem that I believe the A-league has in the visa system, next season is the 10 anniversary since the inception on the A-league and up until now on A-league club has been able to master the system.

Every year Clubs waste viable visa spots on players who turn out to be worse than Australian players, players that don’t play, injury pron player and young players. The point of the visa player system up till this very day unless something changed then let me know, is to have 5 quality international players which start every game for an A-league team. Unfortunately, the purpose of the visa player has seemed to be lost in translation (it stumps me how).  Now on to the marquee players, it amazes me that every year not every A-league team has a Australian, International or Youth Marquee player in their ranks. The point of the international marquee player is for one out of each clubs 5 visa spot to sign a player which is worldly renown and above the salary cap. Now people may say that some clubs cant afford to sign a player of that magnitude of cash, well I say that is crap. If the owner of an A-league club cannot afford an international marquee player then why do they own the club in the first place. I hear of so many A-league owner that are struggling financially, the solution is simple (you may not like this) either go in to co-ownership with another multi-millionaire or had the licence of the club back to the FFA.

Visa Spots

Above is the current foreign players in the A-league that occupy visa spots. Look at each club carefully, you can easily pick out at least one player per team they they could go without.

Marquee

These are the current marquee players for each team. Notice all the vacant positions? 

In the next ten seasons of the A-league I’d like to see some changes.

  1. Every club has a big name signing
  2. Every club has an Australian Marquee
  3. Each club has 2 International Marquee’s ( One for over 2 million and one for under)
  4. The National Youth league has a visa system ( 2 or 3 visa spots for each NYL team- e.g. the roars relationship with the Bakrie Group, having 3 promising Indonesian players in our youth side to develop them. The deal would be that when the visa youth player in to the Senior team they wont count as a visa spot. This occurs for all a-league team as it will build relationships with other countries)

 This Article from the ROAR.com backs up what I have said above.

http://www.theroar.com.au/2013/09/24/the-a-leagues-culture-of-marquee-signings/

Expansion In the A-League:

The FFA has stated that there will be a possibility of 2 new team in the A-League by 2015. It will be interesting to see which city’s or regions will get a team.

So far there are a few current bids and possible future bids in place.

Possible New Teams-

  • Canberra ( Canberra United FC)
  • Darwin
  • Townsville ( Bringing back the North Queensland Fury with in the next 5 years- having an NQF NYL side prior to that)
  • Geelong ( The Greater Geelong Galaxy FC – Favorite)
  • New Zealand ( Possible South Island Team or Auckland)
  • Tasmania ( Tasmania United FC)
  • Wollongong
  • Ipswich ( Western Pride FC)
  • Sunshine Coast (Sunshine Coast FC)
  • Gold Coast

The Geelong Bid team are the only resent bid to have provided information on how there team might look.

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It looks quite good in my opinion.

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2 Comments on “It Begins [11.10.2013] Are you ready?”

  1. Reuben Vandenberg-Dodt says:

    As much as I agree with the things that you say to be most looking forward to this new campaign, I think you should have put in there about young Kwame Yeboah, he has been prolific in front of goal this pre-season, and the amount of pre-season game time he has had, I see him getting some starts this season, and I think he will make good of his chances

    • Nick McG says:

      Unfortunately, I decided not to go in to detail about every roar player because I wanted this to be more about our goals and the rest of the A-league. However, I plan to write another article about the individual roar players like Yeboah soon. Plus, Scot the other writer has been doing that already


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